Students Celebrate Traditions During Quarantine

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Media by Betsy Eshelmann

Amanda Eshelmann and her family's "March Madness" movie bracket during the first week at the end of March.

Quarantine due to COVID-19 has resulted in families staying home and trying to find unique ways to spend time together while also trying to combat boredom. 

Amanda Eshelmann, junior, and her family of seven spend time together with old, before-quarantine traditions as well as invent new ones. 

“My family and I started a ‘March Madness’ bracket of our favorite movies,” she said. 

She said she and each of her siblings chose a movie they have not watched yet, and then used a number generator to make the bracket. 

“After each movie, we vote on which ones we enjoyed the most,” she said. Eshelmann added that she thinks “Knives Out” is winning. 

Eshelmann said her family started this tradition at the end of March, hence why they call it March Madness. 

Eshelmann and her family have other traditions too. 

“I really enjoy trying new things and recipes with my sisters, and this time has granted us the ability to do that more frequently,” she said. 

Eshelmann said quarantine has brought her family closer together. 

“My family has been fully quarantined since March 16, and this is definitely the longest duration of time we have spent together consecutively,” Eshelmann said. “We have grown closer and learned more about each other for better or for worse.”

While Erin Sullenger, social studies teacher, does not have any new traditions with her family, she spends her quarantine by taking 3-6 hours to work on schoolwork, such as grading. She spends two hours helping her children, who are fifth and first graders, with their schoolwork, and she said she tries to exercise about an hour a day. 

Sullenger said spending time with family is more important now more than ever during this time of stress. 

“Anyone who is feeling stressed out should find some way to relax whether that be reading a book, taking a walk or spending time with their dog or cat,” Sullenger said.

Valeria Galliano-Rouge, sophomore, said she doesn’t mind spending more time with her family. 

“I don’t feel like quarantine is forcing me to spend more time with my family than I am comfortable with because we’re practically doing the same habits that we usually do, and we each respect each other’s space,” Galliano-Rouge said. 

She said those habits include doing at-home workouts because the gyms are closed. 

“A favorite family tradition that we’ve been doing more during quarantine is eating together at the dinner table instead of the living room with our phones and/or the TV,” Galliano-Rouge said. “It’s been nice to chat with the family and forget we are in a global pandemic.”